Friday, 20 December 2013

snowshoeing with a baby

(Jon pulling our little guy)

(snug as a bug)

We went snowshoeing for the first time with our little guy. The sled was actually really solid and not tippy at all, though I probably would only use it on a trail that has been packed down a bit. Cohen fell asleep pretty much the moment we put him into the sled. Instant nap. 

Also, I just feel so lucky to live beside a beautiful harbour. Such a good view.

Thursday, 19 December 2013

Cohen's third teaching day

Cohen went to the elementary school yesterday for his last "teaching day" before the new year. On this visit, the kids learned about what I have to carry in our diaper bag, and about how babies have sore gums when they start to get teeth. Cohen was so happy to see all the third graders. He rolled over for them and smiled at them.

Every third grader made Cohen a Christmas card. The cards were so sweet. Cohen is pretty much a superstar when he visits his third graders. I enjoy seeing him interact with them so much.

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

5 months!!

(hanging out with jon before work)

Cohen is 5 months old today. This is what has been going on with the little man lately:

- he rolls over so well that we struggle to get tummy time in. i love seeing how strong he is getting.

- he loves the bath so much. he splashes his little legs around and pushes the rubber duckies with his fists.

- he will grab anything out of our hands and try to eat it. when we play cards, he spends the whole time on jon's lap, grabbing all the cards.

- he no longer sleeps through the night. that ship has sailed. now he gets up a few times every night (around 2 am and 5 am). maybe he is growing faster than usual right now. no biggie.

- Jon and I are constantly talking about how awesome he is. We can take him to a restaurant for supper, for a long walk, to the grocery store, to a bank appointment, anywhere. He is so good wherever we go. He just seems so happy to be hanging out with us.

PS: Cohen at 16 weeks

Monday, 16 December 2013

on the weekend

We had our staff Christmas party on Friday night. Cohen had his immunizations that morning, so I didn't really want to leave him with anyone. They recommend you keep a close eye on your baby for 24 hours after they get the shots. Anyway, we ended up bringing Cohen to the dinner. He was perfect for 3 hours, which is pretty impressive for an almost 5 month old. At the 3 hour mark, he was done. I nursed him in the lobby, then we took him home. What a good little guy.

The rest of the weekend was soo cold (minus 16 without the windchill) that it felt right to stay in and drink hot chocolate and watch netflix the whole time. And today is a snow day! All of Jon's patients cancelled, and Cohen's school visit was cancelled. I can't wait to get out there with our snowshoes.

Thursday, 12 December 2013

a winter walk

We took our little coconut for a morning walk on a snowy morning earlier this week. Cohen's grandpa sent him this cool new red sled, and we were so excited to test it out. Cohen feel asleep before we even got out the door. We propped him up with a few quilts and his stuffed sheep. He was cozy and snug in his little sled. In the last picture, we opened up the top of the sled and the snow fell in, but while the sled was zipped up, Cohen was totally protected from the elements. So sweet.

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

1 year ago

I was looking at my iCal from this time last year for whatever reason, and there was a little note on Dec 8th 2012 that said "5th positive pregnancy test". Because I couldn't get in to the doctor for a while after my first drugstore test, I just kept taking tests. I cleaned the drugstore out. All 6 tests I took were positive, of course. A year later we have an almost 5 month old.

I think it's amazing how a perfect Cohen-sized space was made in my life. Before Cohen, my life with Jon felt full and awesome. But now, we would feel so empty and sad without Cohen. He is exactly what we needed, and we didn't even know we needed anything.

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

hotel review: sinbad's hotel, gander, NL

we stayed at sinbad's hotel in gander on the weekend. we have stayed at this hotel many, many times over the last 2.5 years. 

price: around $135 per night, which includes breakfast. this is standard for gander.
bathroom: pretty old-looking, nothing fancy. but the water pressure was off-the-charts, which i love
breakfast: complimentary breakfast buffet had hard-boiled eggs, hard old waffles, undercooked bacon, chewy oatmeal, melon from a can, cold cereal. not too good, but the effort was there. i would way rather order off their awesome breakfast menu.
wifi: yes, free, and fast
tv: our new thing is storage wars. so addictive.
pool: nope
location: the best in gander. we were able to bundle cohen up in the stroller in our room, and stroll to the mall across the street really easily.
parking: included, but tight. not easy to find a spot in the evenings.

- the restaurant in the hotel is really good. important to me. i always get the strawberry beef tenderloin
- there is a smoking section. even if you choose a room with no smoking, you do get the smell of smoke in the hallways. they try to disguise it with perfume-y air fresheners, which only makes it worst.
- the bedding was definitely new. very comfy beds.
- the artwork in the room was hilarious. both above-the-bed prints were women looking longingly out the window at teenaged boys. very weird. very '90's.

Monday, 9 December 2013

on the weekend

(lots of green juice these days)

(dude chilling in his exersaucer)

(playing with dad)

(coffee at jumping bean)

(coco entertaining the chef)

We look a little trip to Gander this weekend. We has some errands to run, and we wanted to see a few friends. Cohen is seriously such a good little traveler. He slept the whole drive to Gander while J and I listened to a hilarious This American Life podcast (this one). We stayed at Sinbad's (review to come), and we ate at Bistro.

I was wondering how Cohen would be at Bistro, which is for sure the fanciest restaurant in Gander. People go there for their anniversary and birthday suppers, and so I knew that if Cohen was feeling irritable, the other diners would not appreciate it. I rarely if ever see kids there. But in the end it worked out perfectly. The key: Eat early. We were seated at 5:30, which is way earlier than we usually eat. But it was so great, because we were practically the only ones there (no one to annoy if Cohen cried), and the staff were not busy at all. The owner ended up taking Cohen in back to see the chef, who was able to make Cohen laugh his head off with a little peek a boo. It was so nice. 

The next day we checked out the new coffee shop in Gander, the Jumping Bean. The brownies were amazing, the chocolate chip cookies were not the best, and the blueberry scones were perfect. I would recommend. J and I wish there was a coffee shop in Clarenville.

Thursday, 5 December 2013

Back to work after baby: 1 month

(testing out his high chair)

I have been back to work for four weeks now. Some thoughts:

- Leaving Cohen in the morning does not get much easier. Cohen wails as soon as I pass him to the sitter in the morning. I sometimes cry a tiny bit on the drive to work. We always check in with the sitter when we get to work, and Cohen is always fine within 10 minutes. But it's still so hard!

-  Being back at work feels really good. Once I am there and I know Cohen is good, I love doing what I do. I love that I get to talk to people all day. I love that I get to work with my hands and solve problems all day. Very different from being at home with Cohen.

- Pumping is a little tough. I have to get up super early in the morning to pump before work, then I have to pump again mid-morning at work. I am really speedy about it now, though, so it's not too bad.

- I am so glad I only have to work part time. I can't imagine working any more right now. My working days make me so grateful for my home days. I absolutely love being home with Cohen on my home days.

- It feels good to get a paycheck again. Even though it is significantly smaller, I still like knowing that I am contributing to our financial goals.

- I like that another experienced mom takes care of Cohen. It feels so good when we come home from work and the sitter tells us that he is such a good-natured, happy baby. Makes me feel like we are doing a good job.

- Cohen gets cuter while we are at work. I love holding him in my arms after a long day at work. He smiles whenever he sees us now, which is the best feeling ever.

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Our baby has a flat head

It's true. I followed all the rules and guidelines. I read the books. We did tummy time. I even learned about flat head at the hospital before we were discharged when Cohen was born. But at his 6 week checkup, Cohen was diagnosed with minor flat head. So now he goes to physiotherapy every few weeks. They take it pretty seriously around here. He will be in physio until his first birthday.

(our little sweetie with his PT)

At physio, she measures Cohen's head, and checks for improvements in the shape of his head. Then she massages his little neck muscles a bit. Then she does exercises with him to make sure his motor skills are developing appropriately, and to strengthen his muscles.

I have to admit, at first I was a little skeptical about the whole physio thing. So I read the studies (OK, just the abstracts and the conclusions), and from what I gather, almost half of all Canadian babies have flat head. It is likely due to the strict rules about putting your baby to sleep on his back to avoid SIDs. And the methods don't seem really great in these studies, but they find that babies with flat head score a few points lower on intelligence tests than their round-headed friends.

Needless to say, I am not worried one little bit. We are doing all Cohen's "homework" from the PT, but I am certain that our little man's head is perfect. If you are interested in what Cohen has to do for homework, see after the jump. Also, I am so curious if babies who live outside Canada are being diagnosed with flat head too.

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Things to do in Clarenville: Clarenville coffee house

(he enjoyed himself. i swear)

 (drool face)

We attended the monthly Clarenville coffee house last week. It is the last Thursday of every month. It's held in the basement of a church, but I think the event is totally unconnected to the church. I didn't hear a single bit of gospel. I think the location has more to do with the lack of actual coffee houses in Clarenville.

Anyway, it was cool listening to the musicians. One girl sang a song with her yukele. Another sang christmas songs at the piano. It seemed like most of the acts were novice, which was really nice. You could tell it took some guts for a lot of them to get up onstage. I would guess that it was the first time performing for a crowd for a few of them.

We will definitely be attending this event on the regular. I am even going to try to get J to go up and sing a song.

Monday, 2 December 2013

Cohen's second teaching day

Cohen had to 'teach' again last week. He'll be going every month for the rest of the school year, and I'll probably post photos every time because I am such a proud mama. See his first teaching day here.

(in his uniform)

(saying hello to each student individually)

The theme for this class was crying which worked out well since Cohen had decided he didn't want to nap that day, so he was pretty irritable. He cried, and the students did things to try to make him stop. They had success with waving a noisy toy in front of his face. I'll have to try that at home.

(holding hands with the doll)

Near the end of the class the teacher, who the students call Madame, pulled out a doll to see how Cohen would react. Cohen immediately grabbed the doll's hand, and held on tight to dolly's thumb until they took the doll away. It was basically the cutest thing I ever saw.

The students had to note any changes they saw in Cohen. They all agreed that he was longer and bigger, with longer hair. Very observant. So cute.

Sunday, 1 December 2013

A new friend

It's tough making friends as an adult. I'm not the only one, right? I remember this post, which is so good. And it's probably even harder when you move every few years like we do. And being home with a newborn every day? So tough to meet people!!

(Cohen and his new little friend)

Jon and I resolved to each attempt to find a friend in the next month or two. Someone to hang out with maybe once a week. It took me a few months of attending the local breastfeeding club and stopping to chat with every grocery store employee I came across, but eventually I found a friend, a fellow new first-time mom. It's funny how it feels a little like dating. I didn't care about playing hard to get. I asked her to hang out the day after we met. Jon was impressed. Haha. Now we have a standing weekly afternoon coffee date. Also her little baby is adorable. I think in a few months our babies will be bff too.

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